Amoako Boafo announces new artist space in Accra, Ghana

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Amoako Boafo announces the opening of dot.ateliers, a revolutionary artistic space in Accra, Ghana. Designed by Sir David Adjaye OBE OM the space is built and developed with sustainability and the next generation of artists in mind.

dot.ateliers Initial Sketch white C David Adjaye 1
dot.ateliers, Initial Sketch © David Adjaye

Founded by acclaimed contemporary artist Amoako Boafo, and designed by award-winning architect Sir David Adjaye OBE, dot.ateliers have been created with the vision to cultivate an ecologically responsive and community-oriented destination within the community. The monolithic three-story structure features a gallery, studio, café, art library, office and external generator yard, and was conceived as an “architectural tool” for rethinking the possibilities of sustainable design within its waterfront neighborhood – the low carbon footprint building is defined by a signature sawtooth roof, while the gallery level is bathed in natural diffused light cultivating an ideal environment for art display. The opening of the space speaks to Boafo’s desire to strengthen the scope of art venues in his hometown. 

“Artists bring so much value to the world and don’t ask for much in return except for support in the form of spaces and materials to create and freedom to experiment with their creativity and maybe recognition to crown it all. It has always been a passion of mine to support artists, especially those from the continent and those in the diaspora as a whole.

Hopefully, a little assistance from us all can help grow their talents, add value to themselves and their works, thus allowing them to continue adding value to the world.” – Amoako Boafo 

“It’s been incredibly special to collaborate with Amoako in the creation of this new institution which promises to become one of the key places, both regionally and globally, to discover emerging talent. What is impressive about Amoako is his unparalleled commitment to building a new, relevant, and contextual model for cultural production and infrastructure. His vision for dot.ateliers — which has been guided by the viability of engaging a broader discourse — will become a space that manages and mediates the multiple trajectories of the creative sector.” – Sir David Adjaye OBE OM 

To launch the space, dot.ateliers are thrilled to announce two inaugural exhibitions, to run from December 17th 2023 to January 15th 2023. 

‘PLAY IT LOUD’ is a solo exhibition of work by Amoako Boafo, curated by Nigerian-British curator, Aindrea Emelife.  The exhibition serves as a reflection on Boafo’s practice and his associations with home, community and an expansive  art history with work from recent years. With representations of key elements of his work – such as representations of  the Black figure, pattern transfer, investigations into interior scenes and deeply textured and uniques renderings of the  skin, the show presents an abridged history of Boafo’s artistic interests and signature style, presented for the first time  in his hometown of Accra. The exhibition focuses on previously unseen works from Boafo’s personal archive. Thus,  with this exhibition, Boafo shares the legacy of his pioneering work to the community in Ghana whilst also allowing  further curiosity into the references and ideas central to his practice. Aindrea Emelife, the curator of the show,  elaborates:

“Amoako Boafo is a key Ghanaian artist scaling the heights of creative power, both at home and on an international stage. The works in the show explores the artist’s investigations into the interior lives of Blackness multifaceted. Intersecting, deftly and at once, between joy, freedom and boundless resistance by existence – the show delves deep into Amoako’s understanding of the representation of the Black body, the resonance of colouration and textural dialogue within the skin, as well as explorations of colour, negative space, absence and presence. Blank space becomes a connector – an empty puzzle piece when transposed onto Black skin, creating disappearing acts with old chairs, redacting swim shorts. Presence becomes disrupted, as the viewer negotiates the understanding of the permanence of communities within history. What is left unsaid, is often most powerful. Boafo encourages a nuanced incompleteness.” – Aindrea Emelife 

‘SIDE BY SIDE’ is a group exhibition curated by Akworkor Thompson. A fresh and energetic display of Ghanaian creative excellence, the work features collaborations with a carefully selected group of emerging and established artists. Boafo and the selected artists have created a unique body of work that further uplifts the voices of artists living and practicing in Ghana and outside Ghana. Each piece is an eloquent conversation between two artists exchanging signature strokes for tactile textiles, laced with stories of old, evoking both joy and nostalgia. An embodiment of an intimate interplay between two lovers of tone, texture, shape, space and bold bright colors. This move in his career is a projection of the future of African art, a place where artists collaborate and form coalitions to support the growth of a burgeoning creative landscape. Exhibiting artists include Eric Adjei Tawiah, David Aplerh-Doku Borlabi, Millicent Ako-Nai Dede, Crystal Yayra Anthony, Otis Kwame Kye Quaicoe, Kwesi Botchway, Cornelius Annor, Stephen Allotey and Nana Bruce. 

dot.ateliers will be a groundbreaking new space in Accra for viewing contemporary art, while also directly supporting the next generation of talent through providing studio spaces and residencies. The advisory board for dot.ateliers features Mariane Ibrahim, Larry Ossei-Mensah, Derek Fordour, Glenn DeRoché and Nish McCree. 

The residency programme will launch in 2023 with five handpicked artists for the initial year of the initiative; Zandile Tshabalala, Clotilde Jiménez, M. Florine Démoshthéne, Crystal Yayra Anthony and Dzidefo Amegatsey.

Following this, the programme will be a rolling opportunity for emerging talent, hosting open calls to support between six to eight artists a year. dot.ateliers will also be hosting an invitational writer and curatorial residency program, with further details forthcoming. 

For further information, please visit dot.ateliers.

Source: https://www.artafricamagazine.org/

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